>Drew has a dream of winning a college scholarship and playing in the NBA. He and his family live in Harlem, and his mother worries about his safety, as well as the safety of his sister, Jocelyn. Everything is smooth sailing until House, his coach, brings in two white players, Tomas and Colin. Drew doesn’t think they are very good, and he’s a bit perplexed about why they have earned so much playing time without paying their dues. He begins to view the situation through racial lenses, and he second guesses every move from House, Tomas, and Fletch, the assistant coach.
Walter Dean Myers has a story to tell that is not unlike many with African American protagonist yearning for a shot at a better life. I think he could have done much more with the story, though. Drew’s internal conflict over his own self confidence never really gets below the surface. The conflict with House and Tomas never reach a satisfying apex. Although his basketball play-by-play is enjoyable, it’s rather predictable. I wanted something more, not a rehash of somewhat dated cliches.
Drew does have game. Somewhere within him lurks a dynamic character waiting to escape. I didn’t dislike the book. I just found myself wishing for more as I read. Tell me what you think.